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Preview: - Democracy and Human Rights - Peace, Conflict, and Human Rights

A nonpartisan resource for information and analysis

Published: Fri, 30 Sep 2016 03:17:08 -0400

Last Build Date: Fri, 30 Sep 2016 03:17:08 -0400

Copyright: Copyright 2016 by the Council on Foreign Relations. All Rights Reserved.

Putin Is Making a Mistake in Syria—and Russia Will Pay the Price

Wed, 28 Sep 2016 10:09:11 -0400

Writing in the Washington Post, Philip Gordon warns that Russia will pay a price for its unconditional support for Bashar al-Assad in Syria.


Afghanistan at an Inflection Point

Thu, 22 Sep 2016 15:58:02 -0400

Afghanistan’s unity government has made progress on reform but remains dogged by endemic corruption and a resilient insurgency, says expert Christopher D. Kolenda.


Political Corruption and Instability in Brazil

Mon, 19 Sep 2016 15:48:32 -0400

Matthew M. Taylor discusses Brazil's political and economic outlook.


Media Files:

A Sharper Choice on North Korea

Fri, 16 Sep 2016 00:01:38 -0400

The Task Force recommends revising U.S. policy toward North Korea to break the cycle of North Korean provocation and promote stability in Northeast Asia.


Understanding the Roots of Conflict in South Sudan

Wed, 14 Sep 2016 11:45:22 -0400

South Sudan’s civil war is the result of a weakly institutionalized state and may require the African Union’s intervention to find peace and stability, says expert Alex de Waal.


Beware Investing Too Much Hope in the Syrian Ceasefire

Tue, 13 Sep 2016 10:14:11 -0400

Even if Assad is prepared to abide by the truce, rebel groups may not be, writes CFR president Richard N. Haass


A No-Fly-Zone Doesn’t Mean a No-War-Zone

Tue, 06 Sep 2016 15:42:44 -0400

And the politicians and pundits calling for one in Syria ought to remember how toothless and ineffective the U.S. air patrols were -- for 12 long years -- in Iraq.


Why Peace Is Not at Hand

Wed, 31 Aug 2016 16:43:19 -0400

New polls of Israelis and Palestinians prove that peace is not at hand, and views on a peace deal are very far apart. But they also contain some interesting data, as Elliott Abrams explains in National Review.



When Allies Become Enemies (Before the War is Over), Obama’s ISIS Plan Has Another Problem

Wed, 31 Aug 2016 11:57:38 -0400

The U.S. wanted Turkish and Kurdish fighters to fight, but not fight each other. Now the administration is scrambling to keep local allies with their own interests focused on America's goal: defeating ISIS.


Checking the Math on the Pentagon’s ISIS Body Counts

Tue, 16 Aug 2016 14:03:33 -0400

The Obama administration steadily updates the tally of dead combatants in its latest war — but can the numbers be trusted?


Cambodia’s Democratic Transition Has Collapsed, With Dangerous Consequences

Tue, 16 Aug 2016 13:54:02 -0400

Joshua Kurlantzick discusses recent shifts in Cambodian politics and the impact on the country’s transition to democracy.


The Refugee Problem in New York

Mon, 15 Aug 2016 10:45:34 -0400

Every September, many of the world’s presidents, prime ministers, and foreign ministers descend on New York City to mark the start of the annual session of the United Nations General Assembly, writes CFR President Richard N. Haass. This year, they will once again highlight the international community's inability to address a pressing global challenge.


What a Failed Soviet Coup Can Teach Us About 21st-Century Populism

Fri, 12 Aug 2016 10:11:31 -0400

Twenty-five years ago this week, a group of Politburo hard-liners launched a coup against Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev. The effort to depose him provoked a gigantic popular protest and collapsed in just three days. With the failure of the coup, the communist system itself began to unravel. “The 20th century” — so claimed Boris Yeltsin, Gorbachev’s rival, rescuer and eventual successor — had “essentially ended.” People power had defeated the Soviet state.


The Persecution of Religious Minorities

Tue, 09 Aug 2016 12:00:39 -0400

Thomas J. Reese discusses the persecution of religious minorities around the world.


Media Files:

Thailand's Democratic Erosion

Mon, 08 Aug 2016 14:35:22 -0400

The adoption of the junta-drafted constitution is the latest episode in the deterioration of Thailand's democratic system, writes CFR's Karen B. Brooks.


How Erdogan Made Turkey Authoritarian Again

Thu, 21 Jul 2016 11:57:54 -0400

Erdogan’s widening purge and crackdown are just the logical conclusion of a story that has been unfolding for the better part of a decade, writes CFR's Steven A. Cook.


The Disappearance of the Two-State Solution

Tue, 12 Jul 2016 16:30:23 -0400

The 2016 Republican Party platform contains no references to the two-state solution. Is this a crisis? Elliott Abrams writes in National Review that, after years of failed attempts to broker a peace agreement, the United States should seek to promote the goal of peace without dictating one sole path forward.



Losing Lives to Save Lives: Targeting Humanitarian Workers in Conflict Zones

Tue, 28 Jun 2016 14:00:53 -0400

Experts discuss current threats to global health workers in crisis zones, and what can be done to stop attacks on humanitarian workers to ensure their safety and neutrality.


Media Files:

Council of Councils Fifth Annual Conference

Thu, 23 Jun 2016 18:59:57 -0400

Delegates from twenty countries discuss how best to address challenges posed by growing geopolitical rivalries, opposition to globalization, dramatic refugee flows, divergent views on global economic governance and international internet regulation, and the absence of a region-wide security architecture in Asia.


Democracy in Decline

Wed, 22 Jun 2016 16:26:57 -0400

In the decade following the Cold War, democracy flourished around the world as never before. In recent years, however, much of this progress has steadily eroded. B


Reconfiguring USAID for State-Building

Wed, 22 Jun 2016 15:39:02 -0400

The United States needs a civilian capacity to foster better-functioning institutions in chaotic countries, and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) should lead that effort. To embrace a state-building mission, however, USAID will have to be transformed. Max Boot and Michael Miklaucic argue that the agency will need to do less but do it better, and limit its efforts to strategically important states while enhancing its focus on building core state functions. 


USAID Should Become the Department of Nation-Building

Wed, 22 Jun 2016 10:25:37 -0400

Washington’s top development agency needs to focus on building governments, not democracies, in chaotic foreign countries.


How Putin Silences Dissent

Tue, 21 Jun 2016 15:37:13 -0400

In December 2015, the Russian antigraft activist Alexey Navalny released adocumentary in which he exposed the corrupt business dealings of the children of Yuri Chaika, Russia’s prosecutor general—the top law enforcement official in the country. In the film, Navalny accuses Chaika’s son Artem of “continuously exploit[ing] the protection that his father, the prosecutor general of the Russian Federation, gives him to extort from and steal other people’s companies.”


Genocide in Burma

Tue, 21 Jun 2016 14:21:41 -0400

Joshua Kurlantzick discusses the persecution and ongoing violence against the Rohingya in Myanmar.


How Big a Success Is the Democratic Revolution in Burma?

Tue, 21 Jun 2016 14:17:34 -0400

Joshua Kurlantzick reviews recent publications on Myanmar and discusses what to expect from the country’s recent democratic opening.


Strategic Reversal in Afghanistan

Mon, 20 Jun 2016 15:24:19 -0400

Recent developments in Afghanistan have increased concerns about the collapse of the Afghan government and major battlefield gains by the Taliban. Seth Jones discusses the implications.


Religion and Refugee Resettlement in the United States

Mon, 20 Jun 2016 13:00:06 -0400

Shaun Casey and Melineh Kano discuss refugee resettlement in the United States.


Media Files:

Must Reads of the Week: A Road Trip Through Syria, Vaulting China's Great Firewall, and More

Fri, 17 Jun 2016 13:34:09 -0400

What Editors are reading the week of June 13–17, 2016.


Fight or Flight

Thu, 16 Jun 2016 14:35:51 -0400

The modern Middle East has rarely been tranquil, but it has never been this bad. Full-blown civil wars rage in Iraq, Libya, Syria, and Yemen. Nascent conflicts simmer in Egypt, South Sudan, and Turkey. Various forms of spillover from these civil wars threaten the stability of Algeria, Jordan, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, and Tunisia. Tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia have risen to new heights, raising the specter of a regionwide religious war. 


What Rome Can Teach Us Today

Thu, 16 Jun 2016 14:04:06 -0400

Ancient Rome was a village that grew into a world empire. At the peak of its territorial reach, AD 117, it stretched from the British Isles to Mesopotamia and from the Rhine to the Sahara. Its history spans more than a millennium. Before the Western Roman Empire collapsed in the late fifth century, Romans enjoyed a standard of living not seen again in the West until the mid-nineteenth century.